Weekend recap

Again, it was a busy one!  But we seem to keep having those, and as my calendar keeps filling up it doesn’t look like things are going to slow down anytime soon.  Which is EXACTLY how I want it to be.

As many of you faithful readers know, I am now working.  A company called Vault Denim has now taken up all my spare time (you know, the time that is not spent caring for my children, like nap times and after they go to bed).  I am learning how to become a super salesman, but I don’t think it’s going to be difficult since the product sells itself – DESIGNER JEANS.  It’s a no-brainer really.  We live in Oregon, the climate is one where you can wear denim 12 months out of the year.  So as long as there are people with the desire to look super fabulous in denim, I have the means to provide that for them.  It’s a part-time job, but one that I can easily earn a full-time income doing.  Not yet, of course, there is still a lot to learn and prepare and learn.  Haha.  But I do love to learn new things, and I accept this challenge head-on!

I had my first public event on Sunday, so I spent all week preparing for it – printing materials, learning the brands, reading tips on how to have a good presence in front of people who have never heard of Vault Denim before.  A fellow consultant created an awesome banner design and I had it printed locally.  I purchased an adorable pink changing room tent and UPS lost the first one, so the company overnight shipped another one for me and then the other one showed up – in other words, I now have two!  Which is perfect for when I am doing a huge event and there are several people needing to try on jeans at the same time.  By the time Friday night rolled around I felt pretty good with my setup.

Saturday morning I woke up and went over to my Mom’s to help her brainstorm ideas on my sister’s wedding dress.  She has the corset style top almost finished, it’s beautiful.  Now she is starting to work on the skirt and bustle and so it was fun helping her come up with ideas on how to incorporate all the fun fabrics they have purchased.  It’s going to be perfect!

Then Enzo and I ran a few errands, looking for some last minute items for my booth setup.  Mark worked in the yard and had it looking beautiful since we were having a Mother’s Day barbecue for our Mom’s the next evening.  I have to say, our yard is really looking nice so far this summer.  Way better than previous years.  It’s nice to be home and have the time to actually care about it.

I had a bridal shower for my friend Heather to attend that evening, it was fun to see some beautiful ladies that I used to work with at Columbia, and catch up a bit.  And to celebrate the lovely bride-to-be.  I am so excited for her and Josh and their wedding on Mt. Shasta!  Enzo helped me wrap the gift…

ribbon wizard

Then I ran over to Vancouver to pick up the inventory of jeans.  Phew!  One very productive day!

Enzo decided to sleep in on Sunday, as my Mother’s Day gift I guess, but unfortunately I was wide awake at 6am thinking about all I had to do that day for my event!  But it was still nice of him.  Mark made yummy breakfast burritos and Claire and I packed up all the stuff and headed over to Woodlawn Park where we met up with my Mom.  Portland Sunday Parkways was hosting a fun day in the park where they encourage people to bike, walk or run on their route and enjoy park festivities afterward.  We set up in the driveway of our friend Julie, which wasn’t on the route but it was close by.  Unfortunately it was a pretty quiet area and we didn’t get too many folks walking by.  Still, it was a good experience setting up and realizing what I needed to make it better next time.  It was definitely not a waste of time.  And I got to spend the day with my Mom and my daughter, definitely something I love to do!  And of course, Mark and Enzo stopped by to say hello…

My set up


taking the baby on a walk


say Hi Enzo!

And then Mark made a delicious barbecue dinner, including the best potato salad I have ever eaten (and it was his first time!).  Yum!!  Thanks to my amazing husband for making my Mother’s Day special, I love you!

I hope all of you Mom’s out there had a wonderful day as well and were treated as the superheroes you are!




Release the pink balloons!

Here she is…

our little girl

And because we had so much fun doing the photo shoot in our backyard last week, here are some candids…








I think he’s happy he’s getting another sister… He’ll be the most loved on little boy in the world!




Our busy weekend

Hi all!  I really wish this was a post with a new maternity dress that I feverishly sewed over the weekend.  But alas, there was just too much to do and I started to cut one out but that’s as far as I got.  It was Claire’s last volleyball tournament for the club season on Saturday.  She had a great turnout of fans…

Andi & Tony, Ebin & Ethan, Papa Ron & Marta, Me & Claire, Justine and Grandma Cindy (Grandma Trudie not pictured, she's behind the camera on account of she hates having her picture taken!) Mark and Enzo were also there, but this was about the time he was on a drive to get the little peanut to nap.

 It’s weird to think the season is over, it went by quickly if you ask me (probably not if you ask Claire). No more making two trips to Gresham a week for practice, no more getting up at 5am on a weekend and spending 14 hours in a noisy gym.  Weird!  What are we going to do with ourselves?

She had a great team this year, and it was fun to watch them grow in their sport that they clearly love playing.  It was a sweet group of young ladies and I wish them all the best in their volleyball futures!  I am sure we’ll meet up with a few of them down the line. 

Go Power! (Claire is the floating head third from the right)

And I want to thank my Mom for being there every single tournament, bright and early to pick us up and do all the driving, endure hours of waiting in between games and nail-biting volleyball action!  I wouldn’t have enjoyed the season as much had you not been there next to me!

I forced her to have this taken, I look HUGE, please keep in mind this was after a 12 hour tournament day (please and thanks!)

 Papa Ron and Marta made the trip from Arlington to watch her play, it was awesome to have the day with them and they enjoyed seeing how much Claire has improved her skills.


 They finished 6th overall in the tournament (it was the Regionals championship) but they played their hearts out and it was a close game every single time.   Those are really fun to watch, but also really tough to take when they lose knowing how hard they worked for it.  Luckily, it doesn’t cause them any tears – they hit the team food table and munch their cares away until the next match.  I wonder how long that will be the case, or if Claire will eventually start getting emotional about a loss. 

I’m proud of my girl, she works hard and is very dedicated to the sport.  I’m a volleyball Mom, all the way!

Then on Sunday we got outside and worked in the yard a bit.  Mark was cleaning out and organizing the shed and Enzo enjoyed seeing all the toys and things coming out of there.  A basketball, a kickball and some lawn games like Bocce.  He spent a good twenty minutes putting tennis balls in the container and then dumping them out again, and then repeating.  So while he was happy doing that, I dug up the weeds and mess that had taken over our little area along the back porch.  Then I laid down paper so that the weeds would have a hard time growing back and covered the paper with decorative pea pebbles.  It looks great!  If I do say so myself.  And I also checked in on the garden, which is looking super happy!

radishes and romaine lettuce, all in a row!

 Mark played soccer in the evening and then we reflected on our very productive weekend. 

Although, I was NOT productive in the sewing area AT ALL.  Sorry about that.  I put out a plan to make a dress a week and that has not happened yet.  I have also been a little preoccupied with my new gig…


More on that later, but let’s just say I am spending lots of time researching possibilities and trying to get all my ducks in a row.

I love when I look at the pictures on my phone and find random ones the kids have taken.  Here was my treat this week…

My sweet darlings!

 I hope you have had a great Monday and tune in tomorrow for some VERY EXCITING NEWS.  We have a very early ultrasound scheduled to find out the gender of our baby and see him/her on the big screen.  We can’t wait!

And don’t worry, we’ll make our announcement on the blog.  Well, actually, this guy and his big sisters will be helping with that…


Stay tuned!



We’re Pregnant! 18 weeks

Hi all!  I realize it’s been a few weeks since my last pregnancy update post.  I mainly put this off because I felt like there wasn’t anything major to update you on, and also I was waiting for my belly to pop a little more so that you could actually see it in the photos.  Don’t get me wrong, I started showing pretty much immediately (third time around) but it wasn’t really a “pregnant belly” sort of tummy.  You know what I mean.

But here we are… 18 weeks along!


Outfit details:

Top – made by me two summers ago, also made one in purple solid knit – I love them!

Shorts – Old Navy maternity, handed over by friend

Sandals – Sorel spring ’12 line – they were gifted by my Mom! (cause she’s AMAZING)

It was such a beautiful day again today.  We broke the record temperatures over the last three days.  It was pretty awesome  to have all the sunshine and Enzo loved how much time we spent outside.  He is definitely an outdoorsy boy.  Today we went on two walks, ate our lunch on a blanket in the backyard and played in the front yard while we waited for Claire to come home from school.

me and the boy

How big is baby?   6 inches long, 5.5 oz heavy and roughly the size of a sweet potato

Maternity clothes?  Yes, most of my regular shirts no longer fit over the belly.  I am still able to fit into regular jeans though, and I have been doing my prenatal fitness DVD so hopefully that continues to be the case.

Sleep:  Still sleepy early in the evenings, a few times I’ve fallen asleep on the couch after putting Enzo to bed (which happens at 7pm) and Mark has woken me up to tell me to go to bed.  I am doing better during the day though, and I think it has to do with exercising.

Movement:  A few little flutters here and there.  Or if the baby does a big maneuver like turning over or something, I can feel that.  But mostly still quiet in there.  It’s okay, it can put off that part as long as possible.  Enzo was a maniac and it was super annoying towards the end.

Food cravings:  Not really, and I haven’t been as hungry as I was in the first trimester.  Definitely not snacking all day long.  I will do a small snack in between meals (crackers and cheese, fruit or a small bowl of something salty) but not every time.

Have you started to show yet:  Oh yes, definitely a baby belly now.  The most fun comments are when people ask how far along and then react with “oh!!!!”  like I’m way bigger than I should be.  I love that.

Gender prediction:  Nope, and I honestly don’t care either way at this point.  But that doesn’t mean we are going to wait to find out.  I am certainly not that patient, plus I like to have all my ducks in a row.  We have an ultrasound scheduled for the 1st of May and we’ll find out then.

What does Enzo think?  About a week ago he pointed to my belly and said “ball”.  But other than that, I don’t think he really has any idea what’s happening there.


My sweet little blonde boy!  *sigh* pretty soon he won’t be the baby anymore.  I can’t think about it, it makes me sad!

I know I promised a post on my maternity sewing project would happen today but I wanted to get this one done first.  So look for that coming tomorrow.  Claire has a regional volleyball tournament this weekend, so I thought I would make a comfortable dress to wear with leggings for the day.



Maternity style

With my last pregnancy I wore a lot of maternity pieces that I either bought off Ebay or at stores like Target and Motherhood Maternity in the mall.  In other words, I took the easy way out.  I have a degree in Apparel Design.  I learned how to drape, pattern and to some degree do alterations.  Now do you see why I say that was the “easy way”?

This time around I am hoping to use more of my own skills, and less of my bank account, by making things to fit my growing belly using the tools I have in my head and the supplies I have in my sewing room.  Between the two, I should be able to outfit myself right up until the day I give birth.  And since it is almost summer, the majority of these items can be simple little dresses!  Easy peasy!

I am planning to do a weekly segment titled “Maternity Dress Project – Week #____(whatever week along I am)” for each week of my pregnancy starting next Monday with Week 18.  Woah!   It’s going by so fast!

Here are some dresses that my sewing machine is dying to create…

by More than Me Maternity


So whimsical and beautiful, I also love the fabric kites!


A wrap dress is a definite must! This fabric is so sweet, too bad I can't recreate it somehow! by More than Me Maternity


I won't need the boots or the cardigan for this one of course, but I love the button front! My cowboy boots would go perfectly! from DIYMaternity.com


Florals are huge right now and I intend to try this top out. It's so simple, and I have lots of loud floral printed jersey in my fabric library already! from DIYMaternity.com


I already bought a dress for my sister's wedding in July, but now that I've seen this number, I may need to re-think my choice. I LOVE the neckline on this! Way to rock it Selma Blair!

So stay tuned for more on this.  I was inspired by the 52DressesProject blog by another Portland gal.

What were your favorite maternity items when you were pregnant?



Sewing projects!

On Sunday I attended a HUGE clothing swap here in Portland.  It was pretty awesome.  For $5, you were able to fill as many bags as you took (of course you took them full of your own clothes to swap to begin with, and then filled them with other things there).  I took two reusable shopping bags from Joann’s that I had laying about, and I filled them both with new duds (well, new to me anyway).  And when I say filled, I mean FILLED.  I was worried they weren’t going to let me get away with it, because I almost couldn’t get the handles to touch using one hand to carry.  But they actually gave me kudos for finding so many things I liked!

There was the biggest table, that was full of tops, a table of skirts, a table of pants (which I didn’t really bother with because I have to try them on and I wasn’t really wanting to put forth that much effort), a rack of dresses that was pretty minimal, a table of kids stuff, a table of coats, a pile of shoes and various small tables of accessories and miscellaneous things.  I scored a pair of boots by Enzo Angiolini, who I’d never heard of but couldn’t resist them since they were my size and had the name on Enzo on the inside.  They are a little outdated style wise, square toe but I like how tight they fit my calves, I have small legs and it’s hard to find boots that don’t just gape out up top.  I also grabbed a couple other little pairs of cheapo boots, just for kicks.  And then several items of clothing that I can wear throughout my summer pregnancy.  A few of the things will require some adjustments, like a skirt that is size XL but was so cute I couldn’t resist (and hopefully will be able to take in the sides no problem).  And one skirt whose zipper is broken and needs replaced but it looks like it will take no work at all to make that happen.  And then some t-shirts I grabbed just for the neckline, cause I plan to cut them off at the waist and use some knit material I already have to make the dress bottom maternity style.  All in all, it was a successful day!  Thanks to my lovely friend Sascha for also going and then treating me to lunch afterwards, you are a dear!!

I will post pictures along the way as I do some of these little projects, hopefully.  The trouble with that is sometimes I just on a whim go to the sewing room and start working.  And that’s when I totally forget to take pictures until it’s too late.  But I’ll try to be more proactive this time.

Happy Sewing!


a little bit of happy!

I saw this today on Facebook, what a sweet surprise!

Thanks Milagros!


Now for the embarrassing story… I was so excited about this that I immediately grabbed the laptop and headed for the workspace to show Mark.  I completely forgot the baby gate was up in the doorway to corral the dogs and walked right into it. As my Dad would say, I went “ass over tea kettle”, dropping the laptop and landing on my face/hand.  Meaning, my hand caught my face but I did end up with a little rug burn on my forehead, and I’m pretty sure I’m going to have a heck of a bruise on my upper thigh where it collided with the gate.  Oh well, it could’ve been worse.  Nothing broken, baby on board was not affected, laptop is still functioning, it’s all good.  I should’ve been paying more attention.

We are getting new windows installed in our house today!  So exciting, and the best part – Enzo just took a two hour nap despite all the noise!

Happy Monday to you!



Fuchsia Saturday – Thanks Mom!

Today my Mom treated us to a day of gardening extravaganza!  She had recently picked up a raised garden bed kit (basically the wooden sides already built, with some screws to hold them together) from Bi-Mart because she knew I was interested in trying one out this year.  And since the weekend forecast called for sun and fairly warm temperatures (65 degrees, hey we take what we can get in the Pacific NW!), we planned to put it together today.  She had read about what was called the “lasagna” style of gardening where you put layers of soil/manure/cardboard/newspapers/mulch into your garden bed and then soak it and let it sit for a few days.  It all joins together and produces a very fertile soil perfect for planting fruits and vegetables. We used chicken poop!  It smelled like the county fair.

And today was also the 22nd annual Fuchsia sale at Fred Meyer, where fuchsias are on sale 5/$3 and they fill your pots with soil for free!  And they will even plant your flowers in the pots while they are at it, if you want.  I left Mark at home to mow the lawn (we also used the lawn clippings in the garden bed) and the baby and I headed to meet up with Grandma Trudie and Auntie Andi.  It was really chilly out, and cloudy, which was completely opposite of what the forecast was saying, so we had to bundle up.  But Enzo didn’t seem to mind the cold.  He actually really enjoyed entertaining those around him, mostly older ladies, and pointing his finger at things.  He likes to point.  And he likes to point and talk like he’s telling you something very important.


and pointing...

talking and pointing...

Then it was home to start in on the yard.  It looked so nice after Mark mowed it, it’s really a beautiful dark green right now and despite the attack of the dandelions, it’s not in that bad of shape.  Oh, and the dog trails.  We dug up last year’s pathetic excuse for a garden, which had turned into a field of weeds and a parsley plant (random).  Mark hammered our garden bed together and Mom and I layered up our soil/poop/paper bag lasagna.  It looks great!

(forgive the blurry photos, I used my phone and I need to practice more to get the focus more accurate)

raised bed

Now I just need to get a plan together of what things I would like to plant.  So far I am thinking this:

* Tomatoes (I’m the only one in the house that eats them, so I’m thinking small ones to just snack on not cook with)

* Squash (any variety, I’d like to learn how to cook more dishes that use squash)

* Pumpkins (for Halloween, duh!)

* Broccoli (I might put Veda in charge of this one, she likes broccoli)

* Celery (if it grows okay in this area, I love to snack on celery)

* Carrots (we eat lots of carrots around here, Enzo especially likes them)

I’d like to do onions but my brother assures me he’ll have enough to feed the entire block so I should just eat his.  Same with cucumbers.  I don’t really use fresh herbs for cooking, I’m not that fancy (or culinary educated) so I don’t think I’ll bother with herbs this year.  That random parsley plant that survived from last year?  Yeah, I’m sure it would have been useful had I cared enough to notice it was doing well.

So here’s what else we did around the yard…

new flowers in pots




new fuchsias in the hanging pots


New azalea (left) to go with the surviving azalea from last year (right)


the raised garden bed, just so proud of it!


we have no idea what this brick thing is, it's like an old bbq pit or something but it's really cool, Veda planted wildflowers in it last year and they came back, complete with a few tulips! Oh and the owl, it also came with the house, score!


My handsome husband, surveying his hard work (that is a greenhouse on the right, not a port-a-potty though that's what it looks like at first glance in this picture : (

Mark ended up with 19,000+ steps on his pedometer today.  Which roughly translates to almost 10 miles.  I think that’s insane!  Enzo loved being outside, playing in the grass and dirt.  He was barefoot in the backyard and it was awesome.  He’s getting really good at this walking thing, but not good enough that he’ll just take off on uneven ground yet.  Next month, we’ll be chasing after him I’m sure!

We ended the day with a delicious dinner, bbq’ing some burgers with the beef that Mark’s parents gave us.  I am going to say it was the best damn hamburger I’ve had in a long time.  It was about an inch thick and cooked perfectly through.  Yum!  I only wished I could have enjoyed it with a nice cold beer, but alas I have 4 months before I’ll be doing that again.

THANK YOU MOM!!!  It was such a fun day and we are so grateful for our beautiful start to a bountiful garden this year.  Come play in our dirt anytime!



Easter weekend at Papa’s

Happy Easter!

Last weekend for the Easter holiday, we traveled east down the gorge to visit my Dad (Papa Ron).  It’s our little slice of heaven getaway from the hustle bustle of the city.  In the middle of nowhere, lots of clean country air and no cell phone service.  I love it.  I don’t think Mark is a huge fan of that, because he is always trying to get enough bars to get an update on a score for the Blazers/Timbers/Beavers while we’re there.  Veda gets to ride the horses, and this weekend for the first time she went out of the pasture on a short ride down the road with my stepmom Marta.

Veda and Ruby

She loved it!  Thanks Marta!

On Saturday we went over the hill to my Grandma’s house and the kids got to hunt some easter eggs just like I did many years ago.  Some of my fondest memories are of Easters at the ranch, all 8 of us grandkids would hunt for eggs (and it wasn’t easy, my Grandma is a master gardener which meant lots of places to hide things) and then we’d all gather on the patio and eat them with the sun shining down.  It was so much fun!  And we have never done that with our own children, so I was especially excited about this idea.  The sun was out, though there was a chilly wind blowing.  My only regret is that we didn’t get pictures of the kids with Grandma!  Darn it!


I had been patiently waiting for Easter to get here so that Enzo could wear the adorable suit his Aunt Yolanda sent him from Spain for his birthday.  It fit perfectly!


Marta made a fabulous dinner, as usual, and the sun was out again.  In true Arlington fashion though, that wind just wouldn’t quit so jackets were required.  But the kids enjoyed the hunt anyway.

Cousins! Veda, Hunter, Wyatt, Enzo and Claire (missing Ebin and Ethan)


We hope you had a wonderful weekend as well!





Enzo – 13 months!

super cheeseball

At which point do we stop stating their age in “months”?  Ah well, so the little goofball turned 13 months old yesterday.  We had a chill day, staying indoors due to yucky cold wetness outside.  And the fact that he is still trying to get over a lame cough and runny nose, and now I am sick with a cold as well.  So we snacked a lot, and practiced walking.  He is getting so good.  He will let go of your hand and try it on his own now without hesitation.  He does still prefer a hand to hold, but if he wants to get somewhere and he feels it’s a short enough distance that he can handle, then he’ll let go and head there.  I love to watch the confidence grow in him every day.  He is incredibly goofy and makes me laugh all the time.  I can’t wait until he starts actually saying things because I have a feeling he’s got some serious wit about him.

making a mess in the kitchen

We started him on a dairy free diet on the Saturday before last, in an effort to to try and treat his eczema.  He’s had dry patches on his legs and arms since he was a few months old, and I figured it was just dryness that he would grow out of.  But at his one year checkup I decided to bring it up with his doctor and she recognized it right away.  Sometimes it is caused by a soy or egg allergy, but since he doesn’t really get a lot of those two things then we decided to cut out milk first.  And we’ve seen a huge improvement.  It was getting to the point that he would scratch himself until he broke the skin if there was an area exposed.  I tried to put him in a t-shirt and pants jammy set one night and he went to town on his stomach.  Then one night last week the footie jammies he was wearing had gotten a little small and so the sleeves were shorter than necessary.  He scratched his left arm pretty good cause he could get to it.  I think he might even do this in his sleep, not even realizing.

young homie

I also picked up some lotion by Cetaphil with restoraderm, and since we started using that it’s pretty much gone completely away.  So now I’m not sure if it’s the lotion or the dairy-free diet.  But one thing is for sure, goat’s milk makes for some seriously SMELLY diapers.  Every now and then I will give him a regular yogurt (because holy cow (no pun intended) goat’s milk is expensive!) and the occasional handful of goldfish, and he doesn’t seem to have a reaction.  So I am thinking we might give it a few more weeks and then try to reintroduce dairy, and just keep the lotion going.

chillin' next to me on the couch, watching Ellen

He is also on a fruit only kick right now.  The only exception is noodles.  He won’t even eat potatoes, I KNOW!  SHOCK.  The boy who used to eat potatoes at every meal.  I don’t know how he does it either but he knows when I have something fruity to give him and when it’s a vegetable, before I even get the spoon to his face.  He prefers to eat finger foods still.  I’ve tried to introduce a few meats and he’s just not having it.

He loves to drum on things, especially if it makes a lot of noise.  His Daddy has been giving him pots and pans to bang on with wooden spoons this week, and he seems to think that’s the greatest thing ever.  It’s REALLY loud.  He also likes to sit in the pantry and get the coffee can and hot chocolate can off the shelf and play them like bongos.  I told him if he keeps it up I’m going to set him down at Saturday Market and he can earn some cash.  I see a drumset in our future.  And that’s fine, I love that he is already showing signs of musicality.

He consistently babbles and has a lot to say.  He likes to be the loudest one in the room talking.  He only says a couple of “real” words:  Mama, Dada, baby, bye-bye.

Being a stay at home Mom is hands-down the BEST job in the world.  I am very blessed.